Freedom. A Powerful Word.

Imbolc                                                    Waxing Bridgit Moon

This Valentine boy would like to send a big Valentine to all the folks in Tunisia and Egypt, to all folks anywhere, including Iran and Pakistan, even to the Tea Party folks, who yearn to be free.  The yearning for freedom and liberty, a chance to steer toward a future of your own choosing is a powerful force.   Once it becomes a dominant theme, its power can and has toppled governments and tyrants.

That said, it carries the same dangers as any revolutionary movement.  As the Who sang, “Here is the new boss, same as the old boss.”  Those yearning for freedom may be no better equipped to create a climate that nurtures freedom than those they’ve ousted.

Why?  Because, no matter the ideology, right or left, Islamist or evangelical, there lies, underneath the layered texts imposed on it,  a human heart, a heart that has its own agenda, no matter the rules imposed upon it.  Often that heart surprises us with its generosity, compassion, fellow feeling; but, too, with its fear, prejudice and ruthlessness.

Still, to paraphrase a UU campaign, I’m committed to standing on the side of freedom and equality, so I give a hearty tip of the hat to all those brave enough to stand up for what they believe, even ones with whom I disagree.

My hope is that whenever freedom lovers grab power, they will reflect a moment on the injustices that brought them there and determine how, this time, their reign will be different.